Forgiveness for my Mother that took my Firstborn…..

This has been a very long road. It hasn’t been just the 32 years that she wouldn’t let me keep my first born daughter. I’ve been angry with Mom since she made Dad go away. Of course she didn’t actually do that , but to a 10 year old girl , it certainly felt like that. Only now am I understanding that He left US. We didn’t fail , he did. As to why he left , I’ll leave that for another day. Today is about my Mom.

They say holding on to anger only poisons you. I have found that to be true. I was so mad at her for my perception that she didn’t love either of us enough to save us. That she could have rescued me , but chose not to. I didn’t see that she simply didn’t have the tools to know what to do.

Mom was with Dad since high school. They are both adopted. She had never been on her own or felt like she was enough. How could she possibly feel she was enough to save her daughter and granddaughter? In my pain I only saw her betrayal and my grief. I didn’t consider the trauma she had been through herself. That everyone she had loved had left her. Adoptees have taught me much.

After I married my lost daughters dad and had her sister, we moved from California to Georgia for his first real job. I was glad to leave, my lost daughter was there and it killed me daily knowing that. I worried about her daily ( hourly ) and this would be a new start. I was only lying to myself. The abuse I had in California came with us to Georgia. It was easier to hide but I was completely alone. Once when he kicked me in the head with his steel toed boots , I didn’t go to the hospital, though I know I needed it. I was terrified they’d take my precious daughter and I had no one to call. I stayed silent.

Shame and silence are companions that protect each other. I struggled to be a good wife and mother and tried to shield my daughter from his fits of rage. He never hurt her and loved her dearly and that was enough. I didn’t matter. I so wanted to prove that I was doing everything well. I wanted the cloak of shame to disappear. It didn’t.

About 17 years ago my mom became too ill to live alone. She moved in with me and my new husband and my daughter and young son. I’d had him shortly before my divorce. Living with the women I felt had destroyed my life was anything but easy. I ranted and sobbed as my lost daughter grew up. I blamed my mom for me never meeting my daughter. I was wrong. It had nothing to do with her and only recently did I discover in therapy that how could I expect forgiveness from my daughter when I wouldn’t grant it to my mom. I had to see my mom as a person , not as the enemy. She moved into assisted living two years ago. I feel that helped a lot. The distance gave me a chance to breathe.

I saw my mom differently as time went on. I saw she loved me dearly and regretted what had happened. I let her love me , finally. That was a huge step for me. Feeling So unlovable is prominent in me. But , I sobbed on her many a night. I am fiercely protective of her as I often felt I had raised her. Dysfunctional much ? Yep.

My moms health is getting much worse of late and fear has grabbed me inside thinking she will soon be gone. I knew I had to fix this Now. She had always loved me and though she wasn’t the mom everyone dreams of in their childhood, she was mine. I’ve watched too many Sisters in Adoptionland find graves. If they could forgive, so could I.

She made quilts for each baby she’d never meet. She atoned as she listened to me wail in primal screams of missing my daughter. She rocked me as I sobbed for what should have been and never will. If I was truly going to own my own story , I could no longer blame her. I accepted my fait and decided I had to find a way.

Her kidneys are now failing and I don’t know how much longer she’ll be here. She has refused all heroic measures. Both of her adopted parents killed them selves. She was abused. She was a victim, too.

I know how hard it is. Our parents are supposed to save us. Mine didn’t. But , they are humans not magical. They make mistakes, some huge. I knew I didn’t need one more ounce of grief and regret. I accepted that she was sorry she didn’t help me. I know it wasn’t out of meanness, but out of not knowing what to do. It took me years to see her as an Adoptee, as one of my Sisters.

As her time here grows to an end , I don’t want it to be full of sadness , but of love. She deserves so much more. I hope I’m up to the task of letting her know that. I’m trying to be more present and not live in the past. It’s very hard when you’ve had the trauma, but she’s worth it. How can I expect both of my daughters to truly love and respect me if I don’t give that to my Mom?

Healing and forgiving are messy and painful. You stumble a lot and it takes time and effort. But , I believe it’s worth it. She is worth it. She has been enough and it’s time she knew it.

I love you Mom. You did your best. You have an amazing legacy and I’m grateful you were in my life all of these years. Don’t go just yet. I’m not done loving you.

When you feel you’re the only one that lives at the Therapist and what happened after that appointment….. raw

I’m at my trauma therapist right now. We are going to do EMDR and dig deep. I’m so nervous. Growing and learning about my trauma and loss isn’t easy. It sometimes hurts like hell. Denying that my parents hurt me has been the ” easy” way. I’m so used to self- loathing, to shame , to never being Enough and to people I love leaving. Exploring all of that is painful.Flash to now: About 18 hours post session. We dug out horrible, disgusting pieces yesterday. Pieces that I’ve never verbalized. Shame fills me even now. I wish I undo it all. After therapy yesterday, I felt spent and tired. Went home , started dinner and my stomach went full on IBS. My back that has stopped hurting, zapped me again with electricity. Of note is that during this time , my mom found out yesterday she’s dying sooner than she thought. Another post. I had a lot of Cbd last night. I felt wonderful. Still noticed areas of pain , but not severe. Still no thoughts on therapy. Isn’t dissociate great ? They came. Whether in vivid dreams or awake in the dark. Reliving awful painful events. Dark secrets meant to drown in the dark. Woke up with a severe migraine this morning. Nausea and diarrhea. Thought of all I was and did. Also , who I am now. I’ve lived my second life atoning every second. Forgiveness isn’t allowed. Self sentencing at its finest. Took a lot more Cbd. Head doesn’t hurt. Numb. Alive. Existing. This post was started on another topic. Obviously, the therapy took it somewhere else.

Yesterday I was the Tooth fairy for my Mom…

Caring for your elderly parents is never easy , and the added difficulty of them causing the biggest trauma in your life sure complicates it even more. My parents wouldn’t let me keep my firstborn, their first grandchild. I’ll never completely understand it. But , they are Adopted and I know that played a huge role.

My mom moved out from the west coast right after 911. She lived with us for 15 years until moving into assisted living 2 years ago. That was not easy having my mom in my home as everything collapsed around me. She heard my truth and watched me dissolve after a rejected reunion. I lashed out , as the teen that had her daughter ripped away. I said many things I’m not proud of and I know I wanted her to SEE what she had done.

She witnessed the turmoil in my family as my raised children, all full siblings with my lost daughter, reacted to adoption. It wasn’t pretty and almost destroyed us all. We are all still working on it and probably will for the rest of my life.

There came a time that I knew I had to forgive her. She had a horrible childhood and just didn’t know how to parent. I knew I wanted to be everything she wasn’t. If only life was that easy. Call it fait , karma , or whatever is easier. Dysfunctional families continue, though not necessarily in the same way or degree.

Learning to forgive her has been a process. I had to see her as the adopted child she was , and not the neglectful parent she had been. She simply didn’t have the tools to raise my brother and me.

As she reaches the end of her life , I don’t want regrets. I try to be a good loving daughter. I fail on occasion.

Yesterday at the doctor, we were checking her out post shoulder replacement. Her front tooth was ” flapping ” as she called it. I asked if she wanted it out. She did. And , in a second it was gone. She was shocked on how I knew what to do.

Memories came flashing back. She never pulled my teeth , brushed my hair or any of the mom things most had. I raised myself and little brother. She simply checked out on our childhood when dad left.

I know if I don’t forgive her and love her , I’ll be forever guilt ridden. I do not need one more drop of guilt or regret in my life. She doesn’t remember most of my life and has dementia now.

So I run her errands, take her to doctors and try to involve her in things she likes. I try to be who I needed her to be. She’s always pleasant and grateful and I feel extreme guilt wherever I fail.

Adoption made us orphans when they took our babies. So ironic how that worked out that way. I’m trying to forgive daily. For me and for them.

If you need me , I’ll be playing tooth fairy, and fixing my moms hair. Love means going through the pain to get to the good stuff.

Father’s Day has come and gone…

Father’s Day has been hard for me for some time. My Dad , an adoptee, eliminated me from his life and his heart. It’s been 10 years since I’ve seen him, and he just stopped loving me. No explanation, nothing.

He abandoned me at age 10 when he left my mom. We had occasional visits, but he liked to take my brother and me to the movies. I truly feel that he didn’t have to interact with us on those visits.

He also wrote off my children, except one. My lost daughter, that he wouldn’t allow me to keep. He’s in her life, and though that hurts , I’m happy for them. I’m sad for her siblings. He’s missing out on two amazing people.

Dad was always my hero. I completely adored him. I still love him with all of my heart. It’s taken years to accept he wants no part of me. The hardest part is I don’t have a reason. He just stopped loving me. How do people do that?

He’s great friends with my ex husband and his wife. That was a difficult thing to swallow. Being so easily replaced. Not knowing why hurt and confused me. I’ll never know.

I wish him Happy Father’s Day every year on FB. We aren’t friends, so I doubt he sees it. I don’t think he ever wanted children and this was his way out.

I wish he’d explain it to me. Understanding makes things easier to accept. It’s the wondering and going over each event that hurts. If I knew why , maybe I could fix it. Wishful thinking at its best.

I love you Dad. Always have and always will. I hope you had a wonderful day. I didn’t call or text because I know that is your wishes.

Life is short. Forgive often and love one another. I’ll always love you.

I’m not Adopted, But I’m Listening to them…

The short version of my story: I lost my daughter 32 years ago against my will. My parents decided it was best. My parents are both Adopted, but I didn’t think of the connection until a few years ago. All of my 3 children are full siblings and I married my lost daughter’s Father 2 years later and had my daughter and my son. We have since divorced. She has refused reunion with me , but has a wonderful relationship with her sister. She is married and just had her fifth child.

No filter here. I lost it the day that precious boy was born. I was heartbroken for me, ecstatic for her, and a complete disaster. Not one of my proudest days. All I could think about was my loss. Every time she has a baby, it felt like I lost her again. PTSD isn’t forgiving to oneself .

I was once again missing them and her and felt I would drown in the powerlessness. After my breakdown, I thought long and hard and kept reading from the Amazing Adoptees. I ended up being so ashamed of myself.

I had my epiphany suddenly! I felt entitled!! I was no better than the adoptive parents that believe they are owed a child. She doesn’t owe me anything! None of this was her choice and promises not kept weren’t made by her. This was huge.

Am I ” over it”? NO. I’m only now just beginning to understand. I’ll never be over her. She’s my daughter and I’ll love her until my last breath. But, she has no obligation to me. None.

I was stuck at 18 for so long , that the pain paralyzed me. If I didn’t clutch her memory, I felt empty. The only moments I had with her lasted less than 24 hours.

My goal now is to enjoy how happy she is. Even though I’ll never meet her, she has a wonderful life. She’s the happy Adoptee. And, would I want her to be unhappy? Never!

I thought about some of our messages over the years and I owe her the biggest apology. In my dream scenario, she’s missing me. She’s not. Why would she ? I’m a stranger. I’m the mother of her sister and that is all.

I’m making tiny baby steps with the support of my Sisters in Adoptionland. I’m growing, ever so slowly, but , it’s a start. Instead of living in the past, I am looking toward the future. The pain isn’t a constant torture. I think of her daily and pray for her and her family.

Adoptees taught me so many things about myself and her. I’m forever grateful for our Sisterhood. ❤️. Wish me luck 💕

I hope that maybe one day, I’ll shine more than I break. One day at a time is the only way to navigate this for my journey.

Triggers and Dissociation….

I find this is my pattern now. It’s somewhat safe, and doesn’t bother those around me. Feeling, remembering, reliving, and all that goes with adoption and childhood trauma is exhausting for those that are in your life. Being numb as possible lightens the load of acting like ” I’m Fine”.

What can a person say to you when you’re crumbling, trying to breathe and hoping lightening will strike you? I’m sorry. It puts you and them in a helpless situation. Everyone knows my story, probably far too well. And, I’ve found that the way my life ended up causes them anxiety. I hate that. Their story may have a much greater ending than mine.

They will have a reunion, meet their adult child and get to hold them, smell them and gaze at their hands. Sounds strange? Can you imagine carrying your baby and having your parents tell you that she’s not welcome? That you shamed them. We want to see them with every breath we take.

Triggers such as Birthdays, new grand babies being born and marriage cause many of us to crash. All the things we thought we’d be part of we aren’t. Though 96% of Adoptees do want contact , there are the 4%. I’m one of them.

You can get caught in woulda, coulda, shoulda for decades. But, the hard truth is you can’t get the time back. You must mourn the baby you lost and for many, do the work for reunion. Even if you are totally prepared, there is no guarantee .

They Adult Adoptee made no promises to us. They don’t owe us anything. We can hope for kindness and a relationship, but don’t hold your breath for that balloon airport meeting.

They often go back and forth. I understand why they do. We abandoned them, even if we didn’t choose to. It’s as simple as that. Why should they trust us? We will probably just leave again, right?

I am stuck , as my therapist says, at the time I lost her. The pain, grief, and powerlessness is profound. Yet, if she hadn’t been born, the world wouldn’t be as wonderful for her and her family. She’s an amazing mommy. I’m so proud of her. I saw just that picture of her new son and knew that whatever I’ve gone through and will in the future has meaning.

My three children are my legacy. I suppose that caring for the critically ill for more than 25 years is a legacy, too. I did something that mattered, and it has to be enough. I lay no claim to their success’s. They have done so well on their own.

I’ve disconnected from this life. I feel far away. It’s safer that way. Just mark the days and expect Nothing. No disappointment can get me anymore if you have no hope.

I’ll continue to help other Moms and children. I will be here for my Adoptee Sisters , too. Adoptionland is huge and I’m an old pro at this. I’ll be past 70 when this new baby grows up. If I’m still here. No matter. I honestly think I’ve done my part.

Others expectations of me are exhausting and I’m too sick for all of this. It’s dramatically impacted my health. Autoimmune diseases are very high among those impacted by adoption. The body can only take so much pain.

I pray for those struggling and it breaks my heart every time I hear we lost another Sister. Adoptees are 4 times more likely to commit Suicide than those not adopted according to the American Pediatric Society.

I don’t think I’ll see a change to Adoption in my lifetime. I pray it changes and only happens when there is NO other way. Guardianship is a way to help children without them losing their identity and history. No more fake birth certificates that say the Adopters gave birth. No more sealed records for adults that want to know their origin.

Sweet dreams tonight. I’ll be up wishing I could change so many things. I’m over 30 years into this and my brain still tries to find a way out of this continuous nightmare. It’s futile. As my beloved Nana would tell me, ” What is, is”.

It wasn’t supposed to turn out this way…

My daughter had her beautiful son last week. He has red hair and I’m sure his daddy’s amazing blue eyes. I’ll never meet him, my daughter, or her 4 other children. I’m thrilled for her. I’m broken inside. Another loss to add to the mountain that is sitting on me.

I thought she’d meet me once. Just that one time. It was not to be. Accepting this is a lot like death. My death. I’m struggling so much. I’m trying to act brave , but , to those that do love me I’m not fooling anyone.

My heart hurts. It literally hurts. We will see what the echo shows. Honestly, I don’t care. I’ve been extremely ill as has my elderly mother. I’m keeping busy but that’s my MO. Push it all away and it will work out. It won’t. She never wants to meet me ever.

Time isn’t healing the wound of losing your first child. She’s alive and happy and raising her family and I’m so grateful for that. I need to accept the facts my brain knows but my heart is too broken to accept.

The stress of this is literally killing me and it won’t be much of a loss. I’m obviously not needed by anyone. Doctors and tests clutter my week and I simply exist. I just made homemade soup. “I’m fine”.

Tell her I loved her since before she was born if I’m not here. Tell her I’m sorry I believed I wasn’t enough. Tell her I’ve thought of a million ways to have fought them better now. Hug her just once for me. Tell her my name.